UAE joins call for open, inclusive trade during G20 meet

The UAE participated in the B20 Summit as an invited guest of India under its presidency to contribute to the G20 forum. The invitation reflects the UAE’s growing importance as a trade partner to the world’s leading economies…reports Asian Lite News

Dr. Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, Minister of State for Foreign Trade, has participated in the G20 Trade and Investment Ministerial Meeting (TIMM) in Jaipur, India, where he joined ministers and trade officials to deliver a slate of proposals to advance global trade and ensure it continues to deliver long-term growth and economic development for all nations.

Chaired by Piyush Goyal, India’s Minister of Commerce and Industry, this was the final meeting of G20 trade and investment ministers before the Leaders’ Summit in New Delhi in September. It adopted the key resolutions developed during the year by the trade and investment working group, which centered on five priority issues: Trade for Growth & Prosperity; Resilient Trade and Global Value Chains (GVCs); Integrating MSMEs into World Trade; Logistics for Trade; and World Trade Organization (WTO) Reform. The outcomes of the TIMM will be presented to the Leaders’ Summit on September 9-10.

The UAE participated in the B20 Summit as an invited guest of India under its presidency to contribute to the G20 forum. The invitation reflects the UAE’s growing importance as a trade partner to the world’s leading economies. In 2022, non-oil trade between the UAE and G20 countries exceeded US$341 billion, representing 55 percent of UAE’s total non-oil trade. These figures reflect a growth of 21 percent compared to 2021, and 56 percent, 34 percent compared to 2020 and 2019 respectively. The G20 accounts for 38 percent of the UAE’s export revenue, while 67 percent of the UAE’s merchandise imports come from G20 member countries.

During the deliberations, Al Zeyoudi reiterated the UAE’s commitment to ensuring equitable, inclusive access to the global trading system for the nations of the Global South, underscoring the role of trade as a catalyst for industrial productivity, job creation and knowledge-sharing. Al Zeyoudi further stressed the importance of cross-border cooperation in building resilience across global value chains, underlining the need to enhance the participation of small and medium sized businesses and encourage diversification of import sources, especially for critical sectors.

Additionally, Al Zeyoudi urged ministers to continue to support the deployment of the latest technologies to increase the scale, scope and speed of trade, including leveraging technology for paperless trade, and reiterated the UAE’s keenness to drive progress on the WTO reform agenda, which he said is a key priority as the nation prepares to host MC13 in Abu Dhabi in February 2024.

“The G20 Trade and Investment Ministerial Meeting represents a powerful voice on global trade issues, and the resolutions we have put forward today will help shape the governance of the multilateral trading system in the months and years ahead. It is clear that we all share the same determination to optimize international supply chains, smooth cross-border exchange, accelerate digitization and provide robust, transparent means for dispute resolution and arbitration. The UAE is ready to lend its support to any effort that fosters a global trading system able to meet the needs of the 21st century, and we look forward to presenting these outcomes at the G20 Leaders’ Summit next month in New Delhi,” the UAE Minister of Foreign Trade commented.

During his visit to Jaipur, the capital of the Indian state of Rajasthan, Dr. Al Zayoudi held several bilateral meetings with trade ministers. These included talks with Piyush Goyal, Minister of Commerce and Industry for India, with whom the UAE signed the first of its Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreements. He also met Zulkifli Hasan, Indonesian Minister of Trade and Prof. Ömer Bolat, Turkish Minister of Trade, during which they discussed the recent developments regarding the respective signed CEPAs with each that currently await implementation later this year.

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